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Sara Kingdom Does Some Bending


sarakingdom

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Yeah, I dunno, I'm still thinking of a challenge here.  Let's see.  Well, one can never go wrong with more Appa.

 

 

1. Waterbending

 

The routine: I'm going to add some strength training in front of my daily swims.  My workouts will still be an hour, just with a few sets of bodyweight exercises up front.  So I need a routine to split in two, and do half one day and half the next.  Squats, pushups, and plank are pretty obvious for the first day, but I don't know about the second.  I hear the pool is good for intro-to-dips, so that's an option, and maybe more plank.  (I'm not going to bother with rows, because I think the swimming will take care of that.)

 

The accomplishment: I'm gonna teach myself butterfly this summer.  My other strokes are good, but I never quite got around to butterfly, and it looks amazing for the shoulders and core.

 

tumblr_m3cvfmBrVO1r6f4rx.gif

 

 

2. Airbending

 

I am not the leaf.

 

Well, which is to say, I'm either too leafy or not leafy enough.  I'm never the right amount of leaf.

 

I need to learn to be the leaf.

 

4XSpk8E.gif

 

The routine: Aikido is good for this.  The leaf does a heck of a lot of irimi and tenkan.  While my tenkan is really damn good, most of life's issues sadly do not involve objects coming towards me.  So I need to practice some mental irimi and tenkan.  I honestly have no idea how that'll work, but I'll give it a shot.

 

Oh, and I should practice my actual tenkan more, too.

 

The accomplishment: Not sure yet, let me look at my adulting list and pick something.  Something I can leaf my way through.

 

 

3. Earthbending

 

Toph is great.  I should be more like Toph.  I need to practice Toph's confidence.  You can do reps of confidence, right?  I'm pretty sure you can.

 

The routine: Er... something something daily WWTD?  Not sure yet.  Do something Tophy every day.

 

The accomplishment: I've got an online course that's based in a bunch of mindset and resilience research, I should finish that up.  That'll be about six weeks, I think.

 

tumblr_ngllo01FZp1tukuhzo1_250.gif

 

 

4. Firebending

 

There's something really interesting about firebenders, if you look closely.  Really counter-intuitively, the best firebenders in the world are the ones with the tea, relaxation, and meditation fetishes.

 

tumblr_m0dv20oHDx1r8tm83o1_250.gif

 

tumblr_my54mkNGvN1qzg70no1_250.gif

 

And that's how they manage this shit:

 

4082904-6861330938-If%2BIr.gif

 

I can identify with that.  So let's see here.

 

The routine: Meditate.  Drink more tea in the evening.  It's relaxing before bed.

 

The accomplishment: I don't have a lot of time that's actually dedicated to planned relaxation.  I've made a new work schedule I'm trying out, to get in enough sleep and everything, it's kind of a work in progress, but what it does have is a few blocks of time that'd make very nice planned-relaxation blocks.  One a week might be a little ambitious for a start, but let's say three times during the challenge.

  • Like 4

I felt like I could run forever, like I could smell the wind and feel the grass under my feet, and just run forever.

Current Challenge: #24 - Mrs. Cosmopolite Challenge

Past: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6,  #7#8, #9#10, #11a & #11b, #12, #13, #14, #15, #16, #17, #18, #19, #20, #21, #22, #23

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And a template for tracking:
 
1. Waterbending
Did I swim: (Current total: 0/60)
Did I do strength training: (Current total: 0/60)
Did I practice butterfly: (Brownie points: 0)
Can I do butterfly yet: No
 

0%
0%



2. Airbending
Did I irimi or tenkan the shit out of something today: 
(Current total: 0/60)
Am I the leaf: No

0%
0%

 
3. Earthbending
Did I do some Toph-like shit today: (Current total: 0/60)
Did I work on my course:  (Brownie points: 0)
Is the course done: No
 
0%
0%

  
4. Firebending
Did I meditate:  (Current total: 0/60)
Why don't you enjoy a calming cup of tea: (Brownie points: 0)
Current count of planned relaxation sessions: 0/3
 
0%
0%

 

Ratings on points totals are scored out of two points a day, five days a week, for six weeks.  Ratings are:

:star: Gave it a shot.

:star: :star: Done in full.

:star: :star: :star: Did something really awesome.

  • Like 3

I felt like I could run forever, like I could smell the wind and feel the grass under my feet, and just run forever.

Current Challenge: #24 - Mrs. Cosmopolite Challenge

Past: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6,  #7#8, #9#10, #11a & #11b, #12, #13, #14, #15, #16, #17, #18, #19, #20, #21, #22, #23

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hug2.gif

 

 

 

And that's how they manage this shit:

 

4082904-6861330938-If%2BIr.gif

 

Pretty sure that had a magical comet on its side, too.  Just saying.

 

But yea.  Iroh Forever.  (I want to make a meditating tea house now....)

RisenPhoenix, the Entish Aikidoka

Challenge: RisenPhoenix Turns to Ash

 

"The essence of koryu [...is] you offer your loyalty to something that you choose to regard as greater than yourself so that you will, someday, be able to offer service to something that truly is transcendent." ~ Ellis Amdur, Old School

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Love the format for tracking!  That is pretty cool and definitely I'll be incorporating into one of my side quests :D.  You have awesome measurable goals and I love how you go into the irony of the best firebenders, the best of the most offensive, aggressive style art, being the ones who are the most laidback :D.  Awesome!

 

I'm following along this time!

appacircles1a.gif

  • Like 1

Race: Were-Jaguar | Class: CodeMONKey

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Awesome. & sweeet adding meditation under 'fire'. I finished the Last Airbender yesterday and was wondering what would go with the element fire. This makes sense. :)

 

One day, it'll be one-handed prison pull-ups, but today is not that day. :)

 

What Would Toph Do:  now that's a way to live. 

 

And yes, tea and meditation go very well for Fire in that universe. 

 

Once, I was Tophier.  I need to learn from Toph.

 

That was a surprisingly apt correlation.  I mean, I struggled a bit for earthbending, but firebending was clearly one of two things, and that's the one I need right now.

 

WWTD. Yes.

 

Also, I never noticed that about Fire Benders. That is profound, I think, particularly as I've always identified as a Fire at heart.

 

I think it's way more interesting, in a way, because it says something entirely different about the scope and need for meditation and relaxation than, say, thinking about it in the context of Airbenders.  (And there are awesome Airbender gifs out there for that challenge.  I was tempted.) 

 

Pretty sure that had a magical comet on its side, too.  Just saying.

 

But yea.  Iroh Forever.  (I want to make a meditating tea house now....)

 

Pretty sure their opponents also had a magical comet on their side.  Just saying.

 

So, not totally unrelated to Iroh-ness, I have ordered some green-tea scented Japanese incense (which is apparently many, many times more subtle than the non-Japanese sort).  Because it apparently makes things smell faintly like a tea-house.  Or a dojo, according to some people who use it for their dojo.  I'm sort of playing with whether I can focus my mind better by controlling the environment I'm working in more.  Which basically means I will be working in a meditating tea house, or something.

 

Love the format for tracking!  That is pretty cool and definitely I'll be incorporating into one of my side quests :D.  You have awesome measurable goals and I love how you go into the irony of the best firebenders, the best of the most offensive, aggressive style art, being the ones who are the most laidback :D.  Awesome!

 

I'm following along this time!

appacircles1a.gif

 

Baby air bison!  Super adorbs!

 

Tracking is not something I do very well.    Check in frequently, yes, but quantify and total, no.  I don't think that's totally behind my failure to think I'm making progress, because I feel the same way about quantified coursework where I do have numbers, but it certainly doesn't help.  So I'm trying new tracking things to see how they work.  Pretty colors, and a clear link between what I'm doing and the goal I'm trying to reach with it.  So even if I get to the end, and routines still don't feel like progress to me, I should be able to point to a finish short-term goal.

 

Glad to have you!

  • Like 3

I felt like I could run forever, like I could smell the wind and feel the grass under my feet, and just run forever.

Current Challenge: #24 - Mrs. Cosmopolite Challenge

Past: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6,  #7#8, #9#10, #11a & #11b, #12, #13, #14, #15, #16, #17, #18, #19, #20, #21, #22, #23

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So, not totally unrelated to Iroh-ness, I have ordered some green-tea scented Japanese incense (which is apparently many, many times more subtle than the non-Japanese sort).  Because it apparently makes things smell faintly like a tea-house.  Or a dojo, according to some people who use it for their dojo.  I'm sort of playing with whether I can focus my mind better by controlling the environment I'm working in more.  Which basically means I will be working in a meditating tea house, or something.

 

Where do you get these magical items?  Because I need.

RisenPhoenix, the Entish Aikidoka

Challenge: RisenPhoenix Turns to Ash

 

"The essence of koryu [...is] you offer your loyalty to something that you choose to regard as greater than yourself so that you will, someday, be able to offer service to something that truly is transcendent." ~ Ellis Amdur, Old School

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Practice Week: Day 2

 

The practice week, in which I start tracking some issues.

 

1. Waterbending

I had a small waterbending failure yesterday, due to a bit of an airbending failure.  My time management took a hit, and it just got too late.
 

2. Airbending
Am I the leaf: No.  No, I am really not the leaf.  The leaf passes through the spinny things, and I just got caught up on air currents.  I had a big ADHD hyperfocus problem yesterday.  While some meditation might have helped break it, getting to the point where I both realize and implement that is a bit of a trick.  So this is a big one that I need to start thinking of some irimi and tenkan tricks for.

 

So.  Hyperfocus.  You can step into it, or pivot around it.  

 

Irimi: Stepping into it, I think, would in this case have been making the decision faster and moving on.  That would have been useful, because I know a few hours got spent confirming a decision I'd already made.  The difficulty here is that impulsiveness is a big problem for ADHD people, and it's something that I carefully trained myself out of very young.  I try to make all my decisions very deliberate.  Not helpful when I expend more time unable to break away from the deliberating than the decision is actually worth.  So I think I need to train myself back into more impulsive behavior - I need to find a way to differentiate useful impulse from not-useful impulse.  Tough to do in a hyperfocus state, because there's a certain failure of perspective inherent in the whole thing, so inherently any decisions made then are by definition suspect.  

 

The takeaway: Practice faster, more impulsive decisions before they're a point of conflict.  Like practicing irimi on the mat before you need to kick someone's ass.  I don't really know how to practice this.  My best guess right now is to get into the habit of asking myself, "How can I resolve this as quickly as possible?" at regular intervals for everyday things, so I'm in the habit of doing that all the time.

 

Tenkan: Pivoting around would, I think, have been breaking for a meditation to clear out my perspective, or setting a time limit and coming back to it if I need to.  Timers on my tasks do help me structure my day and avoid attention problems when I remember to start them.  I do not always remember to start them.  I used to be better with both of those as habits.

 

The takeaway: This looks like an accountability issue, because I know what the habits are, I just struggle to keep them in place.  I don't know great ways of being accountable here, except that maybe I can think of ways to automate this so that my attention span is not the bottleneck on stuff happening.  I've tried to automate the timer, and it's easy to ignore if I don't start it myself, so perhaps I need to automate the reminder in a way that's less easy to ignore.  Meditation, maybe I can find a way to force a work-stop for five minutes.  This will take a little research.  I think there's a technical solution.

 

3. Earthbending
Did I do some Toph-like shit today: I did look pretty badass, for me.  So there was that.

 

4. Firebending

Interrupting my day with some tea or meditation really would have helped.  I did not.

  • Like 4

I felt like I could run forever, like I could smell the wind and feel the grass under my feet, and just run forever.

Current Challenge: #24 - Mrs. Cosmopolite Challenge

Past: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6,  #7#8, #9#10, #11a & #11b, #12, #13, #14, #15, #16, #17, #18, #19, #20, #21, #22, #23

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Where do you get these magical items?  Because I need.

 

Amazon.  Apparently, it has oodles of Japanese incense of all sorts of brands and quality levels for cheap (or not, if you step up in quality far enough).  I got this green tea kind for work, and the same brand in lavender for sleep, because those are two things where I want to be a little more deliberate about my habits, so I'm thinking about environment-engineering and ways to come at habit routines sideways.  I have no idea what they'll be like, but green tea and lavender are both pretty non-abstract smells, and the reviews all say they're pretty naturalistic and unromanticized versions, so I can't go too far wrong, I hope.  (I admit it, I was totally swayed by the review from the guy who uses it every day in his dojo, and the people who said it smelled like a tea house on a rainy day or holding a green tea bag up to your nose.  Dojo tea-house!)  That brand comes with a little holder in each box, so you don't need to buy anything extra, but you need a plate to catch the ashes.  It has some higher-end stuff, and Shoyeido has a whole range, too.  I had never even heard of Japanese incense before, but it sounds interesting.  Less smoky smell because there's no wood core to burn, fairly high level of natural ingredients, and a more subtle faint background smell without the harsh stuff that tends to bother people.  So basically an improvement over everything that usually annoys me about incense.

 

I put their summer selection sampler on my reward list to be exchanged for NF challenge points, along with some kyudo books.  I'm doing rewards this challenge, just to add a bit of fun to it.  And to justify buying myself frivolous things like kyudo books and iris incense.  I mean, incentivizing habits.  Totally incentivizing habits.  (Shhh, give me flowers and archery now, plz.)

  • Like 2

I felt like I could run forever, like I could smell the wind and feel the grass under my feet, and just run forever.

Current Challenge: #24 - Mrs. Cosmopolite Challenge

Past: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6,  #7#8, #9#10, #11a & #11b, #12, #13, #14, #15, #16, #17, #18, #19, #20, #21, #22, #23

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Making snap decisions is definitely a skill and something that has to be practiced. I find for me that I suffer a lot of analysis paralysis, and it's tough to make a call on a thing when you're trying to figure out every aspect of it.

 

In any event, either one of those approaches sound like they could have done something for you in terms of getting you out of it.

 

So. Which one will you use next time?

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In any event, either one of those approaches sound like they could have done something for you in terms of getting you out of it.

 

So. Which one will you use next time?

 

See, I don't think that's the question anymore.  The question is how are you going to practice them before next time.  It's like, which martial arts move are you going to use against a real attack.  The reality is that your judgment is going to be compromised when the real thing comes at you and you'll use whichever comes to hand soonest, so the question is more how you practice and make the responses second nature.

  • Like 1

I felt like I could run forever, like I could smell the wind and feel the grass under my feet, and just run forever.

Current Challenge: #24 - Mrs. Cosmopolite Challenge

Past: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6,  #7#8, #9#10, #11a & #11b, #12, #13, #14, #15, #16, #17, #18, #19, #20, #21, #22, #23

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See, I don't think that's the question anymore.  The question is how are you going to practice them before next time.  It's like, which martial arts move are you going to use against a real attack.  The reality is that your judgment is going to be compromised when the real thing comes at you and you'll use whichever comes to hand soonest, so the question is more how you practice and make the responses second nature.

 

Okay. So. How are you going to practice them before next time?

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Figuring out how to practice a reaction to things/events that don't happen often and happen irregularly is something I struggle with too... (Or am I missing the topic?)

Hm, I just thought of something though - hope it is relevant - maybe being aware of signs within and/or without depending on the situation. Humans among each other tend to be fairly predictable apparently. Awareness training? What possible angle might one strike from the position s/he's coming at? (Literally and figuratively [emoji14] )

Level ☆ human [uncategorizable]
STR 2 | DEX 3 | CON 2 | STA 3 | WIS 5 | CHA 5
Current challenge: Athena focuses on the physical | 
Battle log

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Week 1: Day 1
 
Man, this was one of those days when I need a gold star just for making myself a good breakfast.
 
1. Waterbending
Did I swim: I swim at night, so hopefully the thunderstorms will hold off.  :star: :star: (Current total: 1/60)
Did I do strength training:  :star: Only one set, because I wanted to swim.  (Current total: 0.5/60)
Did I practice butterfly: Yes.  (Brownie points: 1)
Can I do butterfly yet: No.  Although it may be sooner than I thought.  I can kinda put the kick and the stroke together.  It's not super-steady, though, and breathing is a challenge.
 

1.3%
1.3%


2. Airbending
Did I irimi or tenkan the shit out of something today:
:star:  :star: (Current total: 1/60)

Am I the leaf: No
 

1.6%
1.6%


For my first tenkan of the day: standing desk.  I had some terrible ADHD fail yesterday, right after making all the right choices, so I started out with the standing desk today to keep on track.  It's hard to do anything on automatic pilot at a standing desk.  When my brain's not staying on task, it's time to get the body on the job.
 
For my first irimi: how can I get [insert task] done as quickly as possible?  Well, in the case of this post, the answer is "slap an Avatar gif on it, and we'll call it good".  

 

tumblr_mark7uyrno1rhr6eho1_250.gif

 

Gonna go with two stars for today, not because I've mastered today's leafing, but because if today's level of leafery holds, it's progress.

 

3. Earthbending
Did I do some Toph-like shit today: Okay, I'm gonna go with "working barefoot" and "not reading", and one other little thing.  It's only a one-star effort, but it's my first day. :star: (Current total: 0.5/60)
Did I work on my course:  Not yet. (Brownie points: 0)
Is the course done: No

I'm not sure how I'm gonna do this one today.  What Would Toph Do?  Aside from work barefoot, which I am.
 

0.8%
0.8%


4. Firebending
Did I meditate: 17 minutes  :star: :star: (Current total: 1/60)
Why don't you enjoy a calming cup of tea: A big French press full of fresh mint tea.   :star: (Brownie points: 1)
Current count of planned relaxation sessions: 0/3

 

Man, I love this stuff.  I grow mint just for that.
 

1.6%
1.6%

 

 

Challenge Reward Points Balance: -4.  I took an advance to take advantage of a sale. Panda bento picks!  But I have earned today's reward point.  Not through stellar performance, but through the sheer difficulty of dragging myself, kicking and screaming, back to anything approaching normal functioning today.

 

 

Hrm, I seem to be pushing the upper bound of emoticons per post with this challenge...

  • Like 3

I felt like I could run forever, like I could smell the wind and feel the grass under my feet, and just run forever.

Current Challenge: #24 - Mrs. Cosmopolite Challenge

Past: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6,  #7#8, #9#10, #11a & #11b, #12, #13, #14, #15, #16, #17, #18, #19, #20, #21, #22, #23

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I'm sort of playing with whether I can focus my mind better by controlling the environment I'm working in more.  Which basically means I will be working in a meditating tea house, or something.

 

Working in a meditating tea house sounds great. 

 

You would not want your work area to smell like my dojo. It does not smell like green tea. Try as we might, the fans just don't keep up with the smell of sweaty gis.

 

I like how you use your standing desk to control your attention. Automating the triggers for good habits is an excellent strategic move. You have listed quite a lot of good habits. It would be easy to neglect one by accident even on a good day.

  • Like 1

Level 54  Viking paladin

My current challenge    Battle log 

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Week 1: Day 2
 
Last night's swim was really good.  I can still feel it all through my back and legs.  I think butterfly could be interesting.  It's possible the freestyle is what's hitting my shoulders, but I suspect it was at least partly the butterfly drills.  It is... not a sedate stroke.  I really need to figure out the breathing for that.

 
1. Waterbending
Did I swim: Work and things are getting in the way, so I'll probably substitute something tonight. (Current total: 2/60 stars)
Did I do strength training:  TBA (Current total: 1/60 stars)
Did I practice butterfly: No  (Brownie points: 1)
Can I do butterfly yet: No
 

2.5%
2.5%


2. Airbending
Did I irimi or tenkan the shit out of something today: 
:star: (Current total: 3/60 stars)

Am I the leaf: No
 

It was not a good day at work.  And I didn't feel well.  And the mood started slipping worryingly.  So as soon as I could, I went off and made myself useful doing something else.  I just had a blazingly productive two hours in the kitchen.  Ten and two-halves bentos in the fridge, plus dinner for guests tonight.  So something went well today, even if it wasn't what I wanted to go well.  That's sort of a tenkan, I think.  It gets a "you tried", at least.  One star.

5%
5%

 

3. Earthbending
Did I do some Toph-like shit today:  :star: :star: (Current total: 3/60 stars)
Did I work on my course:  Not yet. (Brownie points: 0)
Is the course done: No

 

Not feeling very Toph-like today.  What should I do that's Toph-like, guys?

 

No, no, I think I got this.  Let's see.

 

do9r6m4.gif

 

Yeah.  Days like today happen.  Whatever.

 

5%
5%


4. Firebending
Did I meditate:  I tried, you guys.  There were some issues.  I was tired.   :star: (Current total: 3/60 stars)
Why don't you enjoy a calming cup of tea: I had a calming cup of iced coffee. (Brownie points: 2)
Current count of planned relaxation sessions: 0/3

 

5%
5%

 

 

Challenge Reward Points Balance: -4. (-3 if I get my workout in tonight.)

I felt like I could run forever, like I could smell the wind and feel the grass under my feet, and just run forever.

Current Challenge: #24 - Mrs. Cosmopolite Challenge

Past: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6,  #7#8, #9#10, #11a & #11b, #12, #13, #14, #15, #16, #17, #18, #19, #20, #21, #22, #23

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4. Firebending

Did I meditate:  I tried, you guys.  There were some issues.  I was tired.   :star: (Current total: 3/60 stars)

 

Did you fall asleep when trying to meditate?

 

Because I've totally fallen asleep when trying to meditate before.

 

 

Okay, hopefully today worked better for you than yesterday!  I know the "WTF day!?" feels.  I do.

RisenPhoenix, the Entish Aikidoka

Challenge: RisenPhoenix Turns to Ash

 

"The essence of koryu [...is] you offer your loyalty to something that you choose to regard as greater than yourself so that you will, someday, be able to offer service to something that truly is transcendent." ~ Ellis Amdur, Old School

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Today started out really well, you guys.  Only then... today's Toph thing became clear.

 

680.gif

 

Seriously.  I am so angry that I can't calm down.

 

tumblr_m6c4fwYtId1qeisx2o2_500.gif

 

I can punch something, right?  I mean, what's the point of being a Monk if I can't punch shit?

 

Sigh.  Fine.

 

toph.gif

  • Like 1

I felt like I could run forever, like I could smell the wind and feel the grass under my feet, and just run forever.

Current Challenge: #24 - Mrs. Cosmopolite Challenge

Past: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6,  #7#8, #9#10, #11a & #11b, #12, #13, #14, #15, #16, #17, #18, #19, #20, #21, #22, #23

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